[Baypiggies] native GUI vs. web browser

Heikki Toivonen hjtoi at comcast.net
Thu Dec 17 05:14:02 CET 2009

K. Richard Pixley wrote:
> Heikki Toivonen wrote:
>> But I do agree that for the majority of applications "browser-based" is
>> the future. I would in fact argue that that has been the case for
>> several years already. I see mobile devices currently bucking that
>> trend, but as devices get more powerful and (mobile) browsers more
>> capable, mobile applications will go the way of the desktop applications.
> I don't think they will.

I see that as inevitable development. Someone already pointed out
features of HTML 5 and Google Native Client. There's also websocket,
canvas tag, WebGL(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WebGL), SVG and so on.
CSS keeps adding features. JavaScript is getting faster and faster.
Bandwidth is slowly improving. The browser will also be able to cache a
complete web based application locally (might be able to do already,
haven't really kept up with this) so that you can use it even without
network connection after the initial download.

Given all that you could already code a standards compliant (if not yet
standard then using emerging standard) 3D first person shooter game that
looks and performs reasonably well. It wouldn't be able to compete with
native desktop apps yet, but in a few years we'll probably start seeing
fully browser-based games that look and feel similar to what desktop
games do now.

I think Bespin(https://bespin.mozilla.com/) is a good indication of what
will happen. An "emacs clone" in the browser done in within a canvas
tag. Here's an example of a game done in WebGL:

  Heikki Toivonen - http://heikkitoivonen.net

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